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WTOP.COM: Redskins' Campbell Copes With 'All That Criticism'


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September 10, 2008 - 7:03pm


AP Sports Writer

ASHBURN, Va. (AP) - Standing side by side on a stairway at Redskins Park, Jason Campbell and Clinton Portis did the thing that running mates do: They gave a joint news conference.

So, which of you guys is heading the ticket?

"I'm the vice president," Portis said. "I want to be behind the scenes. Let him get all that criticism, and let me try to clean it up."

Campbell laughed knowingly.

"It's already going on," he said.

The first week of the NFL season has not been kind to Campbell, who had the dubious distinction of playing a bad game on national television three days before anyone else even suited up. Other quarterbacks had rough season openers _ check out the stats for Marc Bulger or Carson Palmer or Vince Young _ but Campbell's uncertain performance in the Washington Redskins' 16-7 loss to the New York Giants already has pundits declaring the combination of Campbell and coach Jim Zorn to be irrevocably flawed.

"We couldn't watch TV for the four days, we're getting beat down so bad," Campbell said.

When Campbell picked up his cell phone in the locker room after the game, there was a supportive text message from former Redskins teammate Mark Brunell, who returns to Washington on Sunday with the New Orleans Saints. Such "hang in there" words of encouragement are helpful for a quarterback when the world seems to be closing in.

"You've got to have tough skin. You've got to understand this is the profession that we play," Campbell said. "I remember when I was growing up, I had people ask me, 'You sure you want to play quarterback and not basketball?' So I had the option there.

"I chose quarterback and now I've got to stick with it. You've just got to stay positive and know things are going to work themselves out."

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The good thing about Jason is that he does not throw too many INTs. He has the height to see the field better from the shotgun than being under center. As soon as Zorn inserts taller WRs in the offense the better Cambell will be under center.

Zorn wants Jason to bend his knees more which I think makes his vision more impared trying to find the shorter WRs. I remember last season Campbell suggested bringing in taller WRs and thats when we went after Mix. I am hoping that the rookies can come to the aid because Campbell really needs a shot in the arm.

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One things for certain, he's handling it much better than Vince Young

All the best JC, nothing would make me happier than to see you succeed. Now go do it!

I believe Vince has something else going on with him. It's more than they are letting on right now.

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